On my last trip down to Villavicencio, as I often do, I went to visit and evangelize a family of one of our students. Since I have been working as the school counselor, when ever a student is having problems the teachers send them to me. I usually involve the families as well as I work with them. Needless to say, I use these meetings as an opportunity to evangelize the families as our school is both a social service and an evangelistic tool.
This particular family had been quite receptive and so on this visit I went to have a Bible study on repentance and the meaning and importance of baptism. They were quite interested as we studied Bible passage after Bible passage. When I finished and asked them if they wanted to be obedient to Christ and be baptized. They said they wanted to talk it over as a family and would let me know.
Since this was the week of the school â€œchurch campâ€ day, I was having conferences with a couple of different grades each day out at our church camp. The day before the son of this family was to go out to the camp, I got a call from his father saying the whole family had decided to be baptized together the next day along with their son. They specifically asked me to baptize them and I agreed to do that for them.
I quickly called around and made all of the arrangements so that we could have some members of the church present to sing and share the Lordâ€™s Supper with them. All of the arrangements were made and the next day the whole family showed up about the time my conferences were scheduled to end. We used the camp swimming pool as our baptistry and we all rejoiced as they were buried to sin and resurrected to a new life in Christ.
After the service, the family invited me out to lunch to celebrate with them. They took me to have a type of slow roasted beef, which is a local favorite. We chatted amicably as we ate. Once the meal was over, the father said the family had a special gift for me back at their house so we headed back there. His wife runs a beauty shop and they opened it up, took me in, and sat me down in the barberâ€™s chair. I needed a haircut and that was the first thing I got.
I presumed that was my â€œgiftâ€ but as soon as that was done, they moved me to another chair and gave me a shampoo. That was not too bad but it was the first time I had someone else wash my hair since I was a small child. But once that was finished they moved me to another chair and informed me they were going to give me a manicure. Well I have never had one of those and did not know what to make of that. I felt embarrassed but did not have the heart to tell them I did not really want one.
Then, as if that was not enough, once that was finished they moved me to another chair and took off my shoes and socks and begin giving me a pedicure. The whole family watched and beamed as they informed me I was getting the â€œspecial treatmentâ€ of their shop. I kept looking around to make sure no one else was watching! After a foot spa treatment to top it all off, they painted my toe nails and finger nails with clear finger nail polish.
When it was all done, the whole family thanked me for helping their child and for sharing the Gospel with them. They were excited to be new Christians and had given me their best as a way of saying thanks. I sheepishly thanked them and left the shop hoping none of the church members had wondered by as I was getting my very first (and hopefully only) manicure and pedicure. But for them it was an expression of love and appreciation and that meant a lot-to me and to them. But while I really appreciated their thoughtfulness, I am not really into things like manicures and pedicures. Clearly they wanted to do something nice for me and I guess that is a potential risk you have to take when you preach to a beauty shop owner!